GoAmerica i711.com now offers VRS

9 12 2006

i711 logoBy now we have probably 15 different Relay Service out there in America.

Several startup relay service provider this year, thanks to 3rd party party which make it easier. Same time it will push every competitors to improve over times but I haven’t seen anything cool or useful yet. Maybe we will see something next year.

Meantime, GoAmerica i711.com launched VRS and they do have several advantage over others such as its address book and they use web-based & flash-based program. I also can use same address book for Internet-based relay service online.

One disadvantage is they do not offers import & export address book such as Microsoft Outlook or Plaxo web-based address book online. Also, it would be nice if they can offers multiple AIM screen name support rather than only limited to one screen name. Maybe someday — we will see.

Visual Language Interpreting (VLI) is their interpreter partner.

To read full article: click here and to learn more about i711.com VRS: click here.

To read Zibeaster’s Stock Blog about GoAmerica and i711: click here. (investment stuff)

Look up my previous discuss about i711: click here.

What do we need to improve our relay service?

16 10 2006

Not too long ago, I talked with a friend thru instant messaging system. We discussed about what we can do to improve our relay service.

I am sure there’s plenty to discuss however I think standard and interoperability is two of the biggest headache right now. I understand that it is all about business to them and as well as struggle with FCC policymaker.

Let’s look at myself as example –

Relay Service Number: I have My IP-Relay phone number primarily for AIM relay service online (text) and Sprint/CSD 800 phone number for my video relay service whenever they need to call me.

Vonage: I recently moved our home phone number from Comcast (non-voip) to Vonage (voip) and we are pleased with it. I am happy that we get to keep existing phone number. Even my wife and I never use it but we need it for our hearing children, emergency and Replay TV device.

eFax: I do have eFax for personal and business purpose. We don’t use it much but we do need it from time to time. It has phone number.

Mobile: I am stuck with two years contract with Verizon Wireless for my PocketPC XV-6700 device – it has phone number. I am not complaining but I am ready to get out of it once contract expire next year. I really want to go back to Sidekick 2 and possibly EVDO card for my laptop. I also have Blackberry device for my job.

Family: My wife and my two children have their own mobile device.

Ugh. You get the picture. I really want to have one phone number for entirely household such as sign mail, callback, answer service, priority service, and those entire bells & whistle features. It’s probably make sense to have one number for each person and all children should be part of it somehow.

Is it possible? Yes, it probably will take time to make possible. Deaf community is not alone, in general could take advantage of it and benefit us all same time. Also, it should be definitely manage by 3rd party service – not by one of the relay service vendors.

We should never use IP number at all. Hopefully it will change over times where we can use same number (10 digits number) at anytime. I know NAD and other organizations already mentioned it to FCC. We will see what happened soon.

I believe in competitions. What does it has to do with relay services? We need more than just VP-200 devices! All companies like Logitech, D-Link, Linksys, etc. should jump this huge opportunity and offers to everyone whether it is for deaf consumer or in general.

Of course, it has to be standard at all types of devices like you would be able to dial 10 digits number from or to webcam-type with computer or thru standalone device. That’s mean all software should offers you to dial number to call standalone device such as VP-200.

It’s going be very exciting and it will happen soon! I hope so!